Lexus, in collaboration with Lexus Croydon, lent a chauffeur insurance client of ours – Real. Transfers – the Lexus GS 300h to experience.
We insure many different commercial vehicles at Plan, and a popular one for chauffeurs is the Mercedes S-Class. We wondered how the two could compare with each other for the driver (and client) comfort and quality.
We asked Real. Transfers for their review on the Lexus’ performance as a potential chauffeur vehicle.
The Lexus is actually pretty luxurious inside and
has a lovely feel to it.
Ozcan Ahmed – owner of Real. Transfers
The Lexus GS 300h model features sophisticated air conditioning that provides ‘climate-control’ to the seats that are occupied, adding to its energy efficiency. It also includes nanoe® technology that purifies, deodorises and moisturises the skin during the journey.
The driver’s seat gives extensive personalisation features – allowing an 18-way electric adjustment. It also features a ‘lower hip point, keeping you closer to the car’s centre of gravity for a more pleasurable drive’.
A Mercedes S-Class feature is a ‘spacious, ergonomic’ car, with quality materials – ‘exquisite leather upholstry’ leading to a ‘feeling of calm and wellbeing’. This would certainly be a comfortable journey for the passengers.
You can also opt for the ‘AIR-BALANCE’ package, that filters and scents the air.
And the luggage space?
The Lexus boasts a load carrying capacity of 451 litres – transporting 5 people’s luggage or 3 sets of golf clubs easily.
A typical Mercedes SClass S500 has a capacity of 400 litres, while the S350’s capacity is a grand 510 litres.
Personally I’ve driven the Lexus, and I’ve sat in the back of it – they’re a very good standard for the industry.
The Lexus model features ambient LED lighting that ‘welcomes you as you approach and enter the car’ as well as ‘soft and tactile finishes that round off the feeling of premium comfort’.
Along with high-end engineered Mark Levinson® audio sound system – with 17 speakers! – surely this standard of experience can keep the Lexus in the running for chauffeur customers?
The S-Class has an ‘Intelligent Light System’ for the headlamps, in an all LED design, that ‘provide a distinctive lighting signature by day and night’. This sounds very similar to the ambience lighting in the Lexus – also in LED.
The emphasised point about the Mercedes’ experience, from their overview, is the comfort that comes with silence. ‘Road roar and engine noise are almost imperceptible’, leading to peace and isolation when riding – or driving – in the S-Class.
[This is an] interesting one, because actually we did get a bit
of a review back and I’ve got to be honest, so far people have
gone for the Mercedes.
Could this be down to the specific, luxury features that each vehicle exhibits?
People do sway to Mercedes – is it because that’s what they’ve got used to so they’re sticking to it?
[I think] it’s like human nature – you get used to something and you just don’t change from it.
[Maybe] that’s why it’s probably quite difficult for Lexus to break into that market.
So, the verdict in this instance currently stands with Mercedes – potentially because of their luxurious vehicle association rather than a specific model experience or specification.
Mercedes has long been associated with luxury, class and quality in the vehicle industry – winning What Car? Luxury Car of the Year award this year. However well other manufacturers can sit side by side with them in these categories, maybe the Mercedes brand is just that bit stronger in the chauffeur industry at this current time.
Any readers feel differently to this? What’s your verdict?
Lexus GS 300h spec and description – website
Mercedes S-Class spec and description – website.
Mercedes boot capacity – website